Tomatillos Hang / Glowing Paper Lanterns Grow / Shine Your Light on Me
It’s July and we’re having record lows. It got down to 56 degrees this week one morning and didn’t get above 75 that day. Today it is back up to a more normal 84 degrees. Lack of rain required that we water the garden early yesterday morning.
We’re already having a lot of fun with the pressure canner. Last weekend we did the 3 pints of haricot vert. On Friday I did 4 pints of salsa (see link for Preserved Salsa in the recipe column on the main page). The fun thing about the salsa was that we got to use tomatoes, onions, garlic, tomatillos, jalapenos, Anaheim, Serrano, and el Chaco peppers from the garden, along with our own basil and oregano. The fresh stuff tasted great, and we’ve already opened a sealed jar to nibble on. It tastes great, and has a lot of depth and complex flavor.
Yesterday we made dill pickles out of some of our cucumbers, plus one of her workmates at work gave her 3 cucumbers we threw in as well (whee)! We used the recipe from the Ball Blue Canning Book for “Dill Pickles” and followed the instructions for making them “kosher style” in 4 of the jars. We got 6 pints of pickles from this, and they are sitting on a countertop now all sealed and happy. While they were cooling I went to go look at them and one went “plink” right in front of me, making me jump. They look great from the outside, but we’re supposed to wait!?! 6-8 weeks for them to season, oh sigh.
We had a potato harvest this week. We harvested all the Yukon gold, caribe, carola, red Pontiac, and the single Nikola potatoes we planted. The nikola plant had excellent production. It was a freebie that the potato company threw in. The caribe, not so much. But the Pontiacs, Yukons, and Carolas did fine. I’m mad just thinking about how many Yukon Golds we would have gotten had the voles not eaten 75% of that box. We have one full box of Kennebecs left to harvest. The new box of Yukon golds is looking great, and we’re putting in a box of organic russets this week.
We also harvested all the onions this week, some of which are curing in the basement.
Speaking of voles, we had a single vole hole and a single celery plant get attacked. We laid down claymores on the perimeter (mouse traps) and napalmed the tunnels (Kaput) and no sign since.
Tomatoes, haricot vert, and yellow squash keep rolling in.
We lost one acorn squash to unknown causes, possibly from heat wilt during more than a week of 95+ degree temperatures. The same period saw the mesclun mix on the side porch die as well. I harvested herbs again this week, and dried most of them.
The garlic is all cured, sorted, bagged, labeled, and stored in the dark cool of the basement.
This morning we added compost to 4 boxes and reworked the boxes. We turned the compost and opened up the right hand section of the worm farm to adding fresh compost.
And we are harvesting celery. Some of them are showing signs of giving in to heat, and we have decided to harvest that part that we want to blanch and freeze. 90% of our celery consumption is in soups, roasted meat dishes, crock pot dishes, casseroles, pasta dishes, and other dishes that are cooked. We really only eat raw celery in the chicken, tuna, or ham salad repertoire.
We are putting up tomato sauce as I write this, and harvested another 5 or so pounds of tomatoes that will go into more sauce later this week. We reset some trellises. All boxes of tomatoes, tomatillos, squash, and melons got trained.
A duck is brining in the refrigerator, and later we’ll be boiling it and then roasting it for dinner. And to think yesterday I told my father “We aren’t doing much for the 4th…”
Wheee! Happy July 4th!